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Complete Idiot’s Guide® to Grilling   by Don Mauer

Serves: 6
Prep time: 22 to 25 minutes
Cook time: 14 to 18 minutes
Serving size: 1 hamburger


    • 2¼ Ib. (80 to 85 percent lean) ground turkey (not all white meat)
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • 1 tsp. fresh-ground black pepper
    • 1 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
    • 1 TB. plus 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
    • 1 TB. plus 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
    • 6 good-quality hamburger buns
    • Ketchup
    • Mustard
    • Sweet onion slices


1. Fire up the grill:

For a charcoal grill: Open the bottom vents. Ignite 6 quarts or 2 1/2 pounds charcoal briquettes or hardwood charcoal. When the coals are hot, set up for a two-level fire: one side high heat (so you can hold your hand 1 to 2 inches above the cooking rack for only 1 to 2 seconds) and the other medium heat (so you can hold your hand 1 to 2 inches above the cooking rack for only 4 to 5 seconds).
For a gas grill: Turn each burner to high and ignite. Cover the grill. When hot, leave half the burners on high heat, and set the other half on medium heat.

2. Place ground turkey in a large, clean mixing bowl, and season with salt and black pepper. Add ricotta cheese, Dijon mustard, and Worcestershire sauce. With clean hands, lightly mix seasonings into meat. Gently shape turkey mixture into 6 (3/4-inch-thick) patties, being careful not to press too hard.

3. Grill burgers, uncovered, over high heat for 2 minutes per side.
On a charcoal grill: Move burgers to medium heat, and grill for 12 to 16 minutes total, uncovered, turning every 2 minutes until they reach medium doneness (165°F).
On a gas grill: Move burgers to medium heat side, and grill 6 to 8 minutes, covered. Turn and grill 6 to 8 more minutes, covered, until they reach medium doneness (165°F). Remove burgers from the grill and let rest for 5 minutes.

4. While hamburgers rest, toast cut sides of buns on the grill for about 2 minutes on high heat. Place hamburgers on buns, and serve immediately, passing ketchup, mustard, and sweet onion slices.

Ricotta cheese bums easily over high heat, so watch the burgers closely to be sure they're just browning nicely.

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